The Clip Club

Primary after-school club in East London, UK – we watch, talk about, shoot and edit short films and clips

Archive for the month “February, 2016”

Session 6: Creative animation + filming

In this session we watched some ‘How to’ videos to get some inspiration for our animations. We found some really good demonstrations on: how to make and animate a face and also how to animate water …. with transparent hair gel! There are lots of interesting well made Howcast videos here with short tutorials on how to make and animate a face etc. See the water one below…

and the face one:

This is what we tried making after watching the tutorials:

face2   face1

It’s interesting to see how some of the films we’ve been watching over the weeks have influenced our story choices. We saw the idea of being swallowed up by a screen in ‘Animatou’. It’s also great to see the old video game characters (like Pacman) back in action.

Some of us started making these clips to explain our activities:

Just for fun here are a few more great animations that relate to some of the above ideas:

A pacman one:

More animated water:

And a fun spaghetti one from famous animator PES:


Session 5: Foley artistry

This week we had a special visitor – Ruth Sullivan – who is a Foley artist. Foley artists are the unseen (but very much heard) heroes of post-production sound effects. All those noises that are lost for whatever reason during filming are re-created in the studio, recorded and edited back into the film. They use all sorts of seemingly bizarre things to make sounds, for example, a bag of cornflour to make the sound of footsteps on snow, celery for the sound of bones breaking, cabbage leaves for something stretching, chick peas in a box or fingers tapping for rain, newspaper in a bowl of water for squidgy sounds and flapping leather gloves for a bird flying away. Fascinating stuff!

Here’s a glimpse of what we managed to record which we hope to use in our film. Now we know what to do, sometimes we’ll be able to use our own sound effects, instead of downloading from the internet or a database.


Later in the session some went off to do some great animating for our dream sequence – involving a transforming caterpillar – and others started trying to document the whole process over the past few weeks. This was less successful as we had a bit of a technology fail… but Michelle will get on top of this next time and make sure this group get some film production done too!


Session 4: Animatou & dream ideas

We started the session by watching ‘Animatou’ (2007, Switzerland) by Claude Luyet. A 6 minute cat-and-mouse style film that demonstrates five different styles of animation from hand-drawn to stop motion with clay and the computer generated. It has won many awards. Some of the ideas from this short were taken up in Run School Run 2.

Michelle showed how she’d brought together the ‘Tinkle-hell’ video from last week (see end of previous post) with some random green screen footage from the previous week. This could provide a structure for the film – in the foreground a pupil asleep on a desk (idea taken from the flip book in first session) and in the background (occupying the green screen backdrop) would be her animated dream …

We then set to work thinking about ideas for what the dream might be. Four groups came up with various things involving bizarre shoes that sprouted arms, killer vegetables and toilet humour! We were quite good at hearing each other’s ideas and many of them might make the final cut. The beauty is that dreams don’t necessarily need to make sense, in a ‘normal’ narrative sense: they can be non-linear which suits our timescale and the surreal theme.

We chose our ‘sleeping pupil’ by drawing names out of a hat (well done ‘Tomato2’!) and got on with the first couple of shots. We voted for what would make some good opening shots and decided on a high angle (as close to a birds-eye-view shot as we could manage standing on the desks) of the sleeper hunched over a desk. This was followed by a mid-shot from the front which tilted upwards slowly to reveal the green screen – and hence – eventually the animated dream sequence …

Here’s one of our opening birds eye view shots:

Others in the group improvised some more animations, developing some great effects – involving a blinking old man and a strange disappearing hand, a caterpillar, and a man being swallowed down the loo.




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